Media Statement

25 June 2019

Minister Pandor concludes Working Visit to the People’s Republic of China

The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Dr Naledi Pandor, has concluded her Working Visit to the People’s Republic of China, where she led a South African delegation of senior government officials to the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Coordinators’ Meeting, which took place from 24 to 25 June 2019 in Beijing.

The meeting was co-chaired by His Excellency Chen Xiaodong, Assistant Foreign Minister of the People’s Republic of China and His Excellency Oumar Demba Ba, Foreign Minister of the Republic of Senegal. The foreign ministers of 53 African Union member states were also in attendance.

The aim of the Coordinators’ Meeting was to assess the outcomes of the Johannesburg Summit in 2015 as well as progress made in respect of bilateral and multilateral cooperation to implement the Beijing Summit outcomes and to expedite the implementation of the follow-up actions endorsed by the Summit, namely under the auspices of the Beijing Action Plan (2019-2021).

The Beijing Action Plan addressed the broad areas of implementation agreed to by the Summit, including Political Cooperation, Economic Cooperation, Social Development Cooperation, Cultural and People-to-People Exchanges, Peace and Security Cooperation, International Cooperation and FOCAC Institutional Development.

One of the key outcomes of the FOCAC Coordinators’ Meeting was the joint commitment made by both sides to continue to actively promote multilateralism and free trade within the current context of increasing isolationist and unilateral actions by global role-players, which could undermine existing rules-based international systems.

On the margins of the FOCAC Coordinators’ Meeting, Minister Pandor also met with her Chinese counterpart, Mr Wang Yi, and subsequently with Mr Yang Jiechi, Senior Minister and a Member of the Ruling Communist Party’s 25 Member Politburo. Minister Pandor also had the opportunity to hold bilateral discussions with Madagascar’s Foreign Minister Naina Andriantsitohaina and Somalia’s Foreign Minister Ahmed Isse Awad.

Minister Pandor witnessed the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between the South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (SARAO) And the National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences (NAOC) on Radio Astronomy (SKA) Research Exchange Programme (RAREP).

Following the FOCAC Coordinators’ Meeting, the Minister will travel to Osaka, Japan, to support President Cyril Ramaphosa at the G20 Summit.

Enquiries: Mr Clayson Monyela, Spokesperson for DIRCO, 082 884 5974

ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION

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